*~~*ARC kindly provided by the author to me in exchange for an honest review *~~*
A holiday anthology from the authors at Interlude Press, an LGBTQ publisher. During the holidays, anything is possible—a second chance, a promised future, an unexpected romance, a rekindled love, or a healed heart. Authors Killian B. Brewer, Pene Henson, Erin Finnegan, Lilah Suzanne, and Lynn Charles share their stories about the magic of the season.
“Gracious Living Magazine Says It Must Be a Live Tree” by Killian B. Brewer
“True North” by Pene Henson
“Last Call at the Casa Blanca Bar Grill” by Erin Finnegan
“Halfway Home” by Lilah Suzanne
“Shelved” by Lynn Charles
Winter is finally over here (in Germany) but with the cold days we had, let us recap this winterly holiday themed anthology published by Interlude Press and with a bunch of amazing talented writers. ❤
I loved each unique story, some more, some less but overall the anthology gave a pleasant winterly feeling, totally fitting but honestly it can be read easily on hot summer nights too. ;D
The different representations were great, we had stories with M/M couples, F/F, from YA-ish stories with funny aspects tovery serious, almost bittersweet & sad ones.
The first story, Gracious Living Magazine Says It Must a Live Tree by Killian B. Brewer was honestly my most anticipated story. It’s a sequel short story with the established couple of Lunch with the Do-Nothings at the Tammy Dinette which I adore most utterly. :3 It was funny, sometimes crazy as hell but always cheerful and sweet, pretty much the most Christmas-y story in the whole novella. Marcus is on the run in the book and you have to sometimes stop reading because of the tears you have because of the laughter. ;D It’s really good Hank is well-aware of the sometimes over-the-top enthusiasm of his lover. 😀
A debut read for me was Pene Henson’s True North, a charming sports F/F story with a pretty young but adult cast. I loved the sports topic, women’s professional basketball league, and how the author delivered the “problem” in having the old crush around. The story was honestly too short because the two women are too adorable. For me the story was a perfect way to see how I liked the author’s writing and with one of the two F/F stories it’s a perfect addition to the whole collection. 🙂
One of the saddest stories was Last Call at the Casa Blanca Bar & Grill by Erin Finnegan, and had a slighty paranormal touch (to be clear, there aren’t shifters or anything like this, you get if when you read the story :)), where the lines of reality and imaginations were blurring. It was a story of loss and grief, bittersweet and tender, also pretty hopeful, with starting a new life, even when the times before look pretty dark. It was a story which lead you ponder a lot & I was astonished by the deeper meaning behind, at least I read it this way. It made me also curious about the author’s writing. 🙂
Halfway Home by Lilah Suzanne was the second F/F story and had a charming, sweet but also heartclenching topic with rescuing an abandonned, lost dog. As an animal and particular dog lover this was a great story and I loved how this story was a great balance of melancholy and happy scenes, the character’s uniqueness with coming along as lakcing of emotions and being accused as distand and cold by her ex-girlfriend and at work. With meeting Grace she opens up and for the first time in her life she feels different. I loved the very different display of the main character and it also let me think a lot about how people judge others based on the daily behaviour.
The last story in the anthology Shelves by Lynn Charles was after Killian B. Brewer’s my second favorite. The library topic was amazing and the matchmaking, playing main character Karina is sweet in her efforts to help her uncle finding his love life. That fate is nice to her too and pushes Hailey, a charming young woman her way, is just the perfect Christmas gift. Truely adorable. ❤
I was really engrossed in the anthology and some of the story were a bit sad, other super funny; all had in common they were so unique and amazing that I got a great insight of the author’s writing and I can’t wait to read more. I’d also don’t mind see some of the heroes and heroines from the short stories. 🙂
Overall the book gets 5 out of 5 stars.